Virtual Bourgeois

Just An Analog Guy Trying to Upgrade For a Digital World

Archive for January, 2009

“It is his shoe. We must worship it!”

Posted by Gerald on January 30, 2009

Sometimes I can find my way to appreciate modern art.

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Quiz Bowl 2009

Posted by Gerald on January 29, 2009

Another year, another local HS Quiz Bowl.

For the second year I acted as moderator.  It is both a fulfilling experience and a rather tiring one.  No big glitches or drama this year – unlike last where we had a majoe brouhaha over a challenged answer.  I guess I’m becoming a fixture.  Some students from one of the teams asked me to pose for photos with them because I’m “such a part of the experience.”  I felt flattered.

Now I feel tired.  Off to bed.

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Here is a Real Crisis for the Administration to Deal with…

Posted by Gerald on January 28, 2009

omigodomigodomigod

Roland Emmerich has the film rights to Isaac Asimov’s Foundation series.

omigodomigodomigod

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Random Musings

Posted by Gerald on January 27, 2009

Hi all – its been awhile

We’ve started the new semester and things are going fine.  No big breaking news in my life.

Tomorrow night I’ll be going to the practice round for the Quiz Bowl for the county’s various high schools.  The real competition will be Thursday.  For the second year I’ve been asked to act as the moderator.  This usally makes for two tiring but rather fulfilling nights, so I’m looking forward to it.

The biggest thing on my mind at the moment is something that has happened in the life of a friend and colleague from work.  She and her husband found out that they had finally gotten pregnant many weeks ago.  About two weeks back things went terribly wrong.  They discovered that they had conjoined twins who were sharing a single heart.  Further tests discovered more problems, especially with the development of the twin girls’ brains.  There was really no question as to how to proceed and she went into the hospital last Friday.  I’ve not heard anything about her condition since.  The moms in our department have formed a tight phalanx around her – for support and to keep away the local “lifers” – and will let me know what is up when they hear and they can.  She and her husband are just in my thoughts.

This is such a bizarre and random thing.  There was no medical reason to believe this was even a possibility (no environmental stuff, no history of twins in either family, etc…) so it just came out of nowhere.  It is one of those inexplicable events that just happen to people.  It is also the kind of thing that drives many folks to want to make sense of it all, to provide some meaning so the world won’t seem as random and uncontollable as it really is.

As always when something of this nature happens, you see a lot of reactions from the by-standers (like me).  Most of us just don’t know what to say or do.  My exact words to her were “I know there is nothing I can do, but if there is anything I can do…?”  My knight complex makes me want to fix things, but years of experience have taught me that many things a) aren’t fixable and b) aren’t really my business unless I’m told otherwise.  Some other folks around me seem to want to own this experience like they had gone through it.  They tell stories that seem aimed at displaying how they understand.  Maybe they do.  I don’t know.  I have greater doubts about the religious platitudes – “God never gives you more than you can handle”, “They are in a better place now”, etc…  Maybe it is my slide into atheism, but I really couldn’t handle that nonsense when my folks died and if I even begin to hear someone handing that to her in the future I may go postal.  Well, I won’t, but I’ll be tempted.

It is just sad.

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